ShipChain settles ICO lawsuit with US securities regulator

Logistics tracking and management firm ShipChain has reached a settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), bringing to a close the regulator’s investigations into the company.

The SEC has reportedly accepted an offer of settlement from ShipChain over the firm’s ICO, which raised $27.5 million through the sale of proprietary tokens, known as SHIP tokens. According to the regulator, the ICO was an issue of unregistered securities, and was not valid under any of the available grounds of exemption.

The sale saw ShipChain issue 145 million of its tokens to some 200 individuals or groups, before the SEC flagged compliance issues with the ICO.

According to details of the settlement, ShipChain has agreed to a course of remedial action, including the transfer of all remaining SHIP tokens under the company’s control, or under the control of company directors, to the appointed Fund Administrator.

ShipChain will also be expected to publish a notice on its website and social media channels detailing the settlement and the corresponding action, in a form of words to be approved by the U.S. securities regulator.

The firm will also then be compelled to communicate the order to exchanges and other platforms selling or facilitating trade in the tokens, again using a form of words to be approved by SEC representatives.

As a result of the case, ShipChain has said it has decided to halt its operations entirely, effectively shutting down off the back of the enforcement action. Taking this into account, the SEC has agreed to settle at $2.05 million, which is reported to be substantially all of the firm’s remaining assets.

The settlement will bring enforcement action against the company and its directors to a close, while taking steps to protect unsuspecting investors from further engaging with the unregistered coins.

The case serves as a reminder to others launching ICOs about the importance of compliance with all applicable securities laws.

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